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If The Dead Could Talk… Is Donald Duke Spitting On Late Yar’Adua’s Grave By Lying?

If The Dead Could Talk… Is Donald Duke Spitting On Late Yar’Adua’s Grave By Lying?
July 16
18:10 2018

Donald Duke may not be a favourite for 2019 Presidential election but the baby-faced former Governor of Cross Rivers is throwing questionable historical narrations into the contest for the reason best known to him. The ardent saxophone player at jazz festivals granted an interview published today on ‘The African Report’ where he narrated his experience with late former President Umar Yar’Adua in the run-up to 2007 presidential election.

In his words, “In 2007, I felt the opportunity was good but on the back of People’s Democratic Party (PDP), it would not have happened because the system at the time was overwhelmingly dominated by President [Olusegun] Obasanjo. And he didn’t want it to happen.

“[The late Umaru Musa] Yar’adua and I had a discussion on this. He came to me in a very interesting manner. He said if I won the primaries, he would like to be my running mate; and if he won the primaries, he would like me to be his running mate. So, it was foolhardy running against him. The structure of the party gave literally everything to Obasanjo at the time, and he did what he did,” he said.

This allusion by Donald Duke contracts his earlier narration about the events at the period. Duke had granted an interview to Azu Ishiekwene of ‘TheInterview’ where he castigated former President Olusegun Obasanjo for forcing the presidential ticket of the Peoples Democratic Party on late Yar’Adua. According to Duke, Yar’Adua and Jonathan were not mentally prepared for power and lacked the vision to preside over the affairs of the country.

Duke said: “Umaru never wanted to be president. He was dealing with his health issues and wanted to retire and go lecture in a university. He was really offered an appointment at the Ahmadu Bello University in Zaria.

“Jonathan, on the other hand, had just been re-elected to be governor of Bayelsa and when he was picked, he was not so pleased. He said to Obasanjo and me, ‘I don’t want this job.’

“If these two men never aspired to the office but were recruited to take on a responsibility as daunting as the management of Nigeria without mentally preparing for the office and having a grand vision of where they wanted to take Nigeria to, then there is a problem.

“The mental preparation is absolutely important. The vision can be scripted for you, but if you are not prepared and you have no capable team to help you follow through, it is grossly unfair. It is like converting a passenger on an aircraft to a pilot.”

It therefore comes as shocking that a man whom Duke had painted as reluctant, visionless and health-challenged is now being portrayed as having such an ambition as portrayed by Duke. Could it be that Donald Duke is conjuring words to ‘big-up’ his candidacy? Only time will tell if this would brighten his presidential chances in 2019.

Duke’s integrity has earlier been dealt some devastating blows in Professor Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala’s book, ‘Fighting Corruption Is Dangerous’. The former Minister of Finance graphically paints how Duke was the emissary of some corrupt cabal that did not want her to take up her appointment under President Goodluck Jonathan.

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